Preparing For Cold Weather - WHLT 22 Connecting the Pine Belt

Preparing For Cold Weather

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HATTIESBURG, MISS. - With temperatures set to drop below freezing this week, there are some things you need to know to keep you and your pets safe.

Hattiesburg Fire Department officials say their emergency calls are starting to pick up.

"We will start to see an increase of fires when the temperature starts to drop and a lot of people try to heat in different ways," said Geneva Morgan with HFD." Alot of people like to use space heaters and wood burning stoves," she said.

Morgan said always unplug them when they are not in use.

It's also a good time to check your smoke and fire alarms in case there is an emergency.

"That's your first line defense in dying in a house fire that will save your life," she said.

It's  not a good idea to use your kitchen stove as a device to heat your home.

"That can actually burn out the elements in our stove and start a fire," Morgan said.

While you are keeping warm inside, don't forget about your pets outside.

"The thing to keep an eye on is that night time temperature," said Southern Pines Animal Shelter Manager Theresa Venette.

"It's always a good idea to make sure you have shelter available for your pet," she said.

Make sure the base of the shelter has some type protective barrier underneath.

"Blankets work really well," Venette said.

Animals still need plenty of water during the fall and winter.

"When the temperatures are colder sometimes that water will freeze and it's hard for them to drink that water with chunks of ice," she said.

She said remember to check on them periodically.

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